Andrew invited a Tibetan monk to visit his pond. The Buddhist gentleman said it was simple and powerful. I too have heard my approach to pond construction is also simplistic. I love hearing this as the most beautiful this world has to offer is seemingly simple.
I placed ecology in a pond near Los Angeles. The workmen on the property walked up to the pond and gave me the greatest compliment: silence. There was nothing unnatural about the pond. It was simply a pond, a simple pond. Granted it was festooned with the flowers bells and whistles. However, a glance was enough to silence the soul. That is what is great about simple.
If you use exactly what nature provides it looks seemingly simple and is. You need only to walk it to your water. The components are all around you. Most ponds do not have the simplest of these: river run rock, the substrate for the microbes in the ponds; and do not have an energy source, a dead log. If you assemble these components, within three years your pond will self-manage.
The science of ecology attempts to describe the components of nature. However, the major mistake is not using enough to turn around extensively degraded environments. You need more to effect change. These places are much in the news: Lake Tahoe, Lake Erie, and estuaries along the coasts inhabited by tourists. The measures for restoration are often inadequate and do not use sunlight as the driving power. For huge plantings are required to restore these waters. This is possible.
Prevention is the simplest method for restoration. Drainage from asphalt into streams and lakes kills invertebrates sensitive to phenols. Likewise these phenols are in conifer bark dust (why nothing grows under them). The invertebrates are algae predators. And these same invertebrates form a huge portion of the diet of fishes and birds. As most drainage ditches flow directly from road to streams, blocking plants are not present but are easily planted.
Froggie, as you can see, the method to restoring our environment is simple and simplistic. Mother Nature has designed it for simple humans to achieve. And what is more, my pond owners achieve a huge sense of well-being because they are healthy.
PonDoc from the pond